Tottenham need a striker. Any Lilywhites fan will tell you just that, while anyone with a passing interest in Premier League football is aware that Roberto Soldado, Harry Kane and Emmanuel Adebayor cannot be relied upon to mount a genuine top four push.
Mauricio Pochettino’s first few months at White Hart Lane have been full of ups and downs, but recent weeks suggest that the trajectory is very much skywards at the moment, with results having been positive, while the players are adapting to the Argentine’s methods. As a result, ‘Poch’ is understood to have cash to splash on a goal-getter, with West Brom’s Saido Berahino the new top target.
But should Tottenham be after the Baggies ace? Here are FIVE reasons he may not be the idea marksman for the Londoners…
The above goal against Manchester United seems like an eternity ago. However, the ball nestled in the back of David de Gea’s net just over two months ago, during which time Berahino’s goalscoring form has somewhat dried up. The 21-year-old has seven Premier League goals to his name, but Alan Irvine has recently withdrawn him from his XI in favour of Ideye Brown, with the Burundi-born ace’s razor-sharp showings having grown less and less frequent.
It may be a bit early to suggest that Berahino is a ‘flash in the pan’ type of player, but the light that burned so bright not long ago has faded a little.
You can prove anything with stats, and the stats suggest that Harry Kane is indeed a better striker than Berahino right now. While the West Brom hit-man boasts a record of eight goals in 20 showings this term, Spurs’ current leading marksman has notched 12 in 21 – better than a goal every two games.
Okay, the bulk of Kane’s efforts have come in Europa League action against, shall we say, less competitive opponents, but putting the ball in the back of the net is still putting the ball in the back of the net.
£25m may not stretch as far as it used to – Roberto Soldado is proof of that – but such a sum is still a massive outlay on one player. Reports suggest that West Brom will not even consider offers of below that figure, which makes Berahino a real gamble. The England U-21 star – who was recently called up to the senior squad by Roy Hodgson – has raw talent, but his recent form is just that, recent. Berahino has shown signs of promise, but to offer such a fee on the back of a few months of action is a risk Spurs should avoid as they set their sights on the top four.
Leading on from the last point, there are better players available for a similar sum. Although he may cost a little more, Spurs’ top target Jackson Martinez is in a similar ball-park in terms of value, with Porto rumoured to be ready to accept offers of between £30m-£35m. Inter’s Mauro Icardi is understood to be worth around £25m, while another Serie A ace in the shape of Mattia Destro is, reportedly, available for around £20m.
Berahino may have talent, but his skills have only been on show consistently for around four months. The 21-year-old has flitted in and out of the Baggies’ first-team for a few years, but this term has presented his first prolonged run. Although he’s impressed, a vast outlay on a ‘new kid on the block’ is hardly the wisest of ideas when Spurs need to get points on the board to sneak back into the top four.